#1
hi

i've been playing guitar since about 09, got my first in 08, and i started with a cheap acoustic. last year i upgraded to a "cheap" epiphone SG, and i finally started practicing at least 3 times a week if not more, recently everyday, trying to improve my speed and get myself to where i want to be: ultimately a good art rock and blues musician.

i like guitar work from bands like women, the kills, dead weather and st vincent, and so i try to start practicing their type of music. the problem is im not getting any faster, noticeably, or significantly better. i practice spider exercises i make up on my own and i don't go easy on myself because then i would really get no where. i am struggling to teach myself theory, and guitar in general, because i can't afford books or a teacher. i am proud of how far i've come by myself, but then i look around at other self taught people and realize i'm not that proud because im not that good.

an example of what i want to do is right here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zru_mgJmBjA

and what i struggle with right here: www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=Zru_mgJmBjA#t=80s but other than that it's coming along.

i am also struggling with figuring out what to practice. people say "practice scale shapes" and i have been, but i don't see a point to playing the G major over and over again. basically, i don't know how to teach myself well. i disciplined myself well by developing a practice schedule but the sessions themselves usually end up with me doing exercises for about 15 minutes, chords for 15, "speed" exercises for 15, practicing a song (recently shaking hand), and then just playing whatever i feel like.

so i was wondering if you guys could tell me what to improve now that i've given you some info on the styles i want to play, where i want to be and how i am currently getting there.
#2
Practice more, I'm sorry to say man, but there is only practice.

If there is something you can't do, practice it until your fingers bleed, that is really the only way. There are no magic excercises that will help you be proficient faster.

When someone says "practice scales", what usually is implied is:
1. Learn the patterns by heart.
2. Practice so you can move as fast as possible between notes and modes.
3. Learn the different modes on the neck.
We should start calling it "The Fact of Evolution", theory, even though correct, does not work with the ignorant..
Last edited by Blargaha at Feb 24, 2012,
#3
Read this: https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showpost.php?p=20850814&postcount=15 and this: https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showpost.php?p=23126091&postcount=16 They will likely change your perspective on getting faster.

Then read this: https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1091796 it should tell you everything you need to know, if you still have questions when you're done then feel free to come back and ask them.
Also as a side note: it's good that you don't see the point in running scales, it is generally a pointless thing for a real musician to do anyway since very little modern music requires just running up and down scales at blazing tempos. People get real bored real quick listening to that.


As for learning theory, start off with the really basic lessons that Freepower has on his youtube channel, they contain the absolute basics you need, once you understand all that (and I do mean understand, not just know) you can move on to these: http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/search.php?value=the+crusade&search_type=columns Start at the beginning and don't move on to anything else until you understand the section you're working on at that moment: all theory is built on a solid understanding of the absolute basics and going from there. Without the basics you will never understand the advanced stuff at all.

Oh and as a final note: if anyone says to you "Oh you really need to learn modes" then ignore them; they either don't know how modes actually work or they're trying to teach you something that you probably will never need.
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#4
3 times a week.. for so little time ? :/
how about practicing everyday
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#5
My advice would be to not focus so much on wether you have improved or not...Let things happen naturally, try to work on things to challange yourself in order to get better and you will get better over time. If you constantly are checking for results its going to set you back IMO when you dont see those results when you want them.
#6
Quote by WaltTheWerewolf
My advice would be to not focus so much on wether you have improved or not...Let things happen naturally, try to work on things to challange yourself in order to get better and you will get better over time. If you constantly are checking for results its going to set you back IMO when you dont see those results when you want them.


+1 the desire to improve must be there, but there must be no impatience or shortcuts taken, the only thing you can do is practice more or/and practice better.
Quote by Hail
i'm the internet equivalent of ripping the skin off my face and strangling you with it right now


Quote by Steve Albini
Remixing is for talentless pussies who don't know how to tune a drum or point a microphone.
#7
Slashiepie is right man, 3 times a week practicing is little time. If you want to be real good you really should practice more